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New Mortal Enemy: Players

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The good news about this award is that nobody cares about this award.

The Sabermetric folks favor Felix Hernandez for his ERA, amount of quality starts and lack of run support, while others look toward CC Sabathia’s league-high 21 wins as a reason to anoint him the best pitcher this past season in the American League.

But the American League players, the guys who actually do the hitting and the pitching, voted the Rays David Price as their "Outstanding Pitcher" for the 2010 season.

Nevermind the hilarious juxtaposition of "sabermetric folks" with "ERA" and "quality starts". That's on the author. The rest is on the players. It was the players who, faced with David Price, Felix Hernandez, and CC Sabathia, settled on the first guy as their best pitcher of the season.

Price, of course, finished with a worse ERA than Felix. He finished with a worse strikeout rate than Felix. He finished with a worse walk rate than Felix. He finished with a worse home run rate than Felix. He finished with fewer innings than Felix. He finished with a worse batting average against than Felix.

One's assumption, then, would be that the players favored Price on account of his inflated win total (ignoring Sabathia entirely because come on). But then, that doesn't really make sense, as wins are something journalists look to when they talk about awards. Players can call on their own experiences standing in against a guy. So I don't think it's the wins. And then one notices that Rajai Davis batted .333 against Felix this year, while he batted .167 against Price. I'm pretty sure the Players Choice voting for AL Outstanding Pitcher was done by Rajai Davis.